President’s Speech

New Principles of Social Policy

Minimum social standards

First of all, the state, especially during a global crisis, should guarantee basic social standards to its citizens.

Our main goal will always be to prevent poverty growth. Poverty should not become a social prospect for any citizen. We should establish basic social standards and guarantees, which should directly depend on economy and budget growth.

This should include:

• Expanding the list of individual needs with inclusion of education and healthcare items (including for the unemployed and disabled for their better socialization), healthy nutrition and healthy lifestyle, meeting intellectual and information needs.
• Calculating the costs of individual needs based on actual prices (hence the need to improve statistics in the country).
• Gradual qualitative enhancement of living standards tied to economic growth. 
Meeting these standards should define the volume of budgetary financing of the entire social sphere. This will increase transparency of the budgetary processes and ensure the funds are better targeted. I instruct the Government to develop respective legislation.

Targeted social support 

The State should render social support only to those groups who need it. 
What needs to be done for that?

• The State will bear full responsibility for targeted support of socially vulnerable groups: retirees, disabled, ill children and others.
• It is necessary to constantly improve social security and retirement Ensuring the protection of mothers and children.
• We should have clear training and retraining programs for the unemployed tied to labor.
• The State should render social support for the unemployed provided that the person under that category masters a new profession and attends retraining programs.
• It is important to create conditions so that employers can actively hire socially vulnerable parts of our society, providing them with a salary. We must create conditions so that the disabled are employed. Only those who really are unable to work should receive our social benefits. We should favor those companies and corporations that employ the disabled and create conditions for them.

Addressing Social Imbalances in the Region 

Third, we should focus on addressing social imbalance issues when it comes to developing our region. 
Poor economic performance of a number of regions impedes employment and widens the gap between rich and poor. 
First of all, we need to enhance coordination among our government agencies in terms of regional development. We aim to synchronize the implementation of all Government and Industry programs by addressing priority issues of regional development. 
By the first half of 2013, the Government must define and budget the list of necessary and prospective projects in the regions. Over the past 12 months, we launched a single-industry town development program. Significant resources were allocated to create jobs, solve social problems and improve the work of local enterprises. 
We will improve the quality of local government. This work is under my personal control. At the same time, we need new effective mechanisms of leveling of social and economic conditions in the regions.

I instruct the Government, along with regional governors, to adopt a small town development program in 2013. It should become a long-term and create a whole range of sectoral projects in their bases. Their aim is to assist to building of a system of sectoral specialization of the regions, to become industrial and manufacturing of the satellite- towns of large agglomerations and, ultimately, increase the level of life of the local population and provide jobs for the village youth.

We need to take measures to resolve complex migration problems that have an influence on labor markets in the regions of the country.

We need to strengthen control on migration flows from the adjacent countries. As a prospective aim we are expected to create favorable conditions for the local qualified workforce in order to prevent their excessive outflow to the foreign labor markets.

In 2013 the Government will have to develop and approve a Complex plan to resolve the migration problems.

Special attention should be paid to Kazakhstan’s border territories. Their potential is not fully recovered yet. It is necessary to make them more attractive for living. The Government, working with governors, needs to develop a series of additional measures to develop the border regions.

Modernization of the Labor Policy

We should modernize employment and salary policy. A key issue in the current global crisis is unemployment growth. Actual employment should be provided by all programs being implemented in the country, as the State as the Sectoral, but not only any their part. Therefore I task the Government and governors 2013 to:

• Integrate all previous programs of entrepreneurship development and business support.
• Elaborate mechanisms of allocation of the budget funds to the regions with the high rate of the unemployed and low-income people.

I personally task the Prime Minister and governors to take responsibility for implementing this updated Program. Half a year ago after my Article “Social Modernization: 20 steps towards the Society of Universal Labor” was published in “Trade Unions and Regulation of the Labor Activity”. Our aim is to create a new model of labor relations, combining entrepreneurship support taking into account the interests of employees.

It is necessary to accelerate adoption of the Law so that it would come into force sooner and protect interests of all employees. The Government needs to take measures to elaborate paying labor costs and minimizing the existing wage disparities. The most important part of this new social policy is the protection of the rights of women and children

Protection of motherhood.

Just as it is important to me personally so it is also important for Kazakhstan.

You are a pillar of family, and therefore – a pillar of the State.
The way our Kazakhstan develops in the future depends on the way we are bringing our children up today.

First of all, it is necessary to pay great attention to the upbringing of our daughters. They are our future wives, mothers, our heart and home keepers.

Kazakhstan is a secular state. By providing citizens the freedom of conscience, the State, nevertheless, will rebuff attempts to impose on our society that are contrary to our traditions and legislation.

We must create conditions so that the girls of Kazakhstan were able to obtain a quality education, good jobs and be free.

Kazakhstan has its own culture, traditions and customs. Women are an important part of our society and should not be restricted from driving cars, pursuing a career or forced to wear traditional dress that has never been worn in Kazakhstan.

Our people emphasize that: “A girl’s path is fragile”. A girl’s path, a daughter’s path is fragile, you can’t break it. A girl, a woman has always being an equal member of our society, and a mother is our society’s most respected figure. We must return unconditional respect to the woman – the mother, wife, daughter.

We must protect the rights of women. I am worried with the situation about growth of the domestic violence against women and children. There should be no disrespectful attitude to a woman and violence should not be tolerated. The State should intervene to stop blatant cases of sexual slavery, attitude to a woman as commodity.

There are a lot of broken families in our country. The State should help singles mothers. We should provide women with flexible employment schemes and create conditions
to work at home. The Law, State and I will be on the side of our women. We will create conditions so that women’s roles in the life of our country can grow. The modern Kazakhstan woman should pursue her career.

It is necessary to actively involve women in the State and public governance, especially on the ground in regions.

Children’s rights

In the peacetime we have thousands of orphans, our orphanages and shelters are overcrowded. Unfortunately, this
is a global tendency and challenge of globalization. But we must withstand this tendency. Our State and society must encourage orphans adoption and building the family-style orphanages.

The number of cases of an extremely irresponsible attitude of men to women and children grows. This is not typical to our traditions and culture. Children are the most vulnerable and unprotected part of our society and they should not be deprived of their rights.

As the Leader of Nation I demand the
protection of the rights of every child.
Any child born on our land is a
Kazakhstan citizen. And the State must
care for them. I am against divorce, it is
necessary to educate our youth in the
spirit of family values. “If the father cannot
herd the sheep, the son cannot herd the yeanling“. Upbringing the children is task of both parents, not only mother’s.

But when divorce must occur it is the father’s duty to pay alimony. The State should support the single mothers and toughen the punishment for nonpayment of alimony.

Upbringing the children is huge investment into future. We should have precisely this approach in this issue and aspire to provide our children with the best education.

I have applied lots of efforts to provide the growing generation with large opportunities to gain a better education: the “Balapan” program is under implementation, Intellectual Schools, Nazarbayev University, “Bolashak” program are operating. As you may know, they can be attended only by well prepared or talented children. Preparing a child to this level is a parents’ duty.

The “All the best to the children” slogan must become a principle for all parents. I instruct the Government:

• To drastically review the legislation in the sphere of motherhood and childhood protection as well as family and marriage.
• Toughen punishment for crimes against women and children the and for infringing related legislation, including the most minor cases.
• To reform the family support system that includes material and non-material incentives such as benefits in taxation, healthcare and social services, providing new opportunities in the labor market and similar measures. We must get rid of a parasitical behavior and help women with an active life believe in their strength and abilities.
• Prevent gender discrimination and work to provide the gender equality and equal opportunities for women and men. In this case I first of all address the employers. 
Health of the nation is basis of our successful future
Our healthcare modernization requires us to introduce common standards of quality of medical services and improve and unify the equipment and supply of medical institutions.

Key Priorities in Healthcare

• To provide affordable medical services at high standards of care.
• To provide diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of diseases.
• To develop a better system of preventive medical care, placing a larger emphasis on the provision of information to the population about standard forms of illness and their prevention.
• Introduce services such as smart medical care, distanced prophylaxis and treatment, and electronic medical care. These new types of medical services are in high demanded in a country the size of Kazakhstan.

New Approaches in Healthcare for Children

• Introduce new approaches in healthcare for children under the age of 16.. It is necessary to fix it in the minimum standards of life by the Law. This step will be an important contribution into provision healthcare of the nation.

Improving Medical Education System

• Improve Kazakhstan’s medical education system through
the development of a network
of specialized educational institutions integrating everyday practice as much as possible into the education process.
• Place a higher degree of
importance to the practical
scientific and research
component (R&D) of the
medical schools’ activity. Higher
education institutions should
particularly concentrate on global
knowledge and technological
achievements replicating a
system of university hospitals,
like in the US, which are the largest and most effective medical centers. We must develop public-private partnerships in this area too.
• Create conditions for the private medical care growth. In the developed world the significant part of the medical service if provided by the private sector. We should create conditions for a rapid transition to private hospitals and polyclinics.
• Enshrine in Law international accreditation of the medical schools and institutions.

Quality of Medical Care in Rural Areas

• Despite making up over 43% of our population the quality of the medical care in rural areas remains poor.

Physical training and sports

• Physical training and sports should become a special area of interest for the State encouraging healthy lifestyle as the key to a healthy nation. We must address the shortage of sports facilities, infrastructure and equipment in our country making these affordable for all. In this regard the Government and local authorities should take measure for development of physical training, mass sports and the construction of physical training facilities basing on model projects, including those in the yards. This work should commence in 2013.

In order to become a developed and competitive nation we must become a highly educated nation. In the modern world the simple embracing literacy is clearly not enough. Our citizens must be ready to permanently gain new working skills on the most advanced equipment using the most modern production techniques.

We must also place a large level of importance to the functional literacy of our children, and the growing generation as a whole. It is important that our children are well adjusted to modern life.

Our Priorities in Education

As in the whole world, Kazakhstan needs to shift to new methods of the preschool education, You may know that I have initiated the Balapan program, the main aim of which is to equalize the starting opportunities of our children. Since implementation 3,956 new kindergartens and mini-centers were introduces.
Taking into account Kazakhstan’s continuing demographic growth into account, I have decided to extend the Balapan program till 2020. I task the Government and governors to achieve the 100% coverage of children by preschool education and training.